Interior of St. Joseph Cathedral in downtown San Diego. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Catholic Bishop Robert W. McElroy announced Monday that indoor services will be suspended throughout San Diego and Imperial Counties because of the surge in coronavirus cases.

“In light of the recent spike in coronavirus cases in San Diego and Imperial Counties, and Gov. Newsom’s request today that churches statewide return to lockdown, I have ordered that parishes throughout the diocese to suspend indoor Masses and other church gatherings until further notice,” McElroy said in a statement.

The bishop said that Catholics in San Diego and Imperial Counties will continue to receive dispensation and are relieved of their obligation to attend Sunday Mass.

“Our first duty is to the safety of parishioners and the public. We ask your continued prayers for an end to this pandemic and for the welfare of coronavirus victims, their families and the courageous healthcare workers struggling to take care of us all,” he said.

Parishes will continue to offer Masses online, as many have done since the initial shutdown of public Masses in March.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.